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Bridging Unix and Windows At NASA

Hemos posted more than 11 years ago | from the making-the-jump dept.

Linux Business 293

slashdotess writes "Information Week reports: "About a year ago, Patrick McCartney, a Johnson Center project manager, created a Linux desktop environment that could also run government-mandated Microsoft apps. This let his team of 30 engineers continue to program in a Unixlike environment and create Word documents and Outlook E-mail all on the same PC. This mixed-use scenario is slowly taking hold, encouraged by a growing number of applications for running Linux on PC desktops." Score another one for Linux on the Desktop."

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First post..... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950799)

I'd like to read the article, but I'm too busy writing this post.....

1st post! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950802)

First post! w00t!

or not..?

OS X... (2, Troll)

bgarland (10594) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950807)

Why don't they just get some Macs? Then they can do Word/Office in a native environment instead of some Wine-like UNIX hack.

Ben

Re:OS X... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950813)

*cough* ... OpenOffice ... *cough*

Re:OS X... (2, Interesting)

D+iz+a+n+k+Meister (609493) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950830)

Maybe it has to do with the cost of OSX + hardware vs the cost of Linux + hardware.

Re:OS X... (4, Insightful)

robbyjo (315601) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950850)

Bear in mind that the "government-mandated Microsoft apps" are not just Word/Office.

Re:OS X... (1)

binarie (636351) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950955)

perhaps... a PC(x86) machine compatibility

Re:OS X... (1)

pacific_fury (636352) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951032)

As far as the price/performance sweet spot goes, OSX may be able to do justice to the performance part of it, but not to the price part. Linux Rulz on this ground. It is just a matter of time before we have almost complete compliance of windows apps on Linux.

Re:OS X... (3, Interesting)

transiit (33489) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951046)

Why should they get a Mac? What would the greater cost of hardware + software get them?

Better multimedia performance?
A simpler GUI?
Proprietary crap masquerading as open source?

This is NASA. These are scientists and mathematicians and people that are smarter than the average visual basic programmer that think that the success of the computer is by slapping on as much meaningless cruft as possible! People that have been using mainframes for years. Scientists.

What does the average mac advocate usually present as the case for the mac since the release of OS X? "It's Unix! Really! We think so! We never use the terminal because we've got crap like iTunes and iMovie and iChat and iBlow! These are innovative apps that aren't at all like winamp, xmms, windows media player, gqmpeg, the numerous windows apps that get bundled with hardware (ulead), broadcast 2k, or any of the players like mplayer, xine, videolan, etc. These are innovative! They've got skins! Just like all those others, but it's got Quartz and displaypdf. We don't know what it does, but damn, does it sound cool! Don't you want to be cool? I've got a TiBook. I'm cool. Some teenage girl on allergy meds says I'm cool. Isn't that what computing is about?"

Ok, so I've gone way overboard into the land of flamebait. But still, why are all the people that claimed any technical merit a year or so ago now collectively creaming their jeans over eyecandy and pretending it to be the greatest contribution to the advancement of technology ever?

My problem with OS X is that it presents so little to the core while trying to slap on a pretty facade. They failed on both accounts. I find aqua to be pretty darn ugly, and beneath the whitewash, nothing that would make me shell out the money to move away from LinuxPPC on the same hardware.

-transiit

Re:OS X... (2, Interesting)

Corporate Troll (537873) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951074)

Strange... what you say is that we Mac users just stay in the graphical comfy part of the OS and never touch the terminal? Hmmmm.
That's kind of strange because my terminal is about always open, often in an SSH to one of my *BSD boxen. You want to know what was the selling point for a Mac for me? It was (and still is) OS X, I don't have to use the mess that Windows is, but I don't have the hassle of managing a Linux system. (I prefer BSD anyway) I may not be a typical Mac OS X user, and you will never hear me say "it comes bundled with flashy apps" because I hate that, you'll never hear me say a Mac is faster because it's not. I couldn't care less about "displayPDF", and I know only about displayPDF because I read it on slashdot: I guess the "standard" Mac user doesn't know and doesn't care.

No, you're right. Your comment was flamebait. If you don't like Macs, buy yourself a Dell with bloated XP and shut up. Besides, you claim to run LinuxPPC. Okay, that is very 31337, I have reserved a 5 Gig partition for it on my iBook. Yet strangely enough I am very satisfied with what OS X offers. LinuxPPC... I'll think about it when my iBook cannot cope OS XI, or I could just stick with OS X 10.1.5 as I do now.

Re:OS X... (2, Insightful)

transiit (33489) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951128)

While my better judgement is trying to tell me that replying to someone who felt "Corporate Troll" was a witty username is a bad idea, I'll bite:

First, you've already shot yourself down by talking about how great OS X is, without stating a single thing that makes you stick with it...even if you do claim to agree that much of the flash isn't very useful.

Second, you've confirmed my assertion that the console/terminal (and thus the layer that most closely resembles unix) is largely unused by stating that you mostly use it to shell into another box.

Third, this was never about windows. I don't use it either.

Fourth, you pull the standard bsd bullshit of "managing linux is hard". I'll give the BSD's credit that they may have a lead on security over linux. (What's that motto? OpenBSD: less than a year without a remote root exploit?) However, the BSD's also cripple themselves by maintaining an "avoid the GPL" mindset and would rather maintain their own userland. I, on the other hand, enjoy what the GNU versions provide. I also won't budge on the utility of Debian's "apt" or Gentoo's "emerge". Even as a diehard slackware user, I'll still give apt the overall thumbs-up when it comes to maintaining a large number of machines.

Finally, you say the apple hardware is slower, that you hate the apps os x bundles, and yet you still paid more. Congratulations. You have achieved a higher level of consumerism.

-transiit

Re:OS X... (5, Insightful)

sql*kitten (1359) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951085)

Why don't they just get some Macs? Then they can do Word/Office in a native environment instead of some Wine-like UNIX hack.

Or run XWin-32, eXceed, or even VNC on ordinary PCs and share a large Unix machine? This is by far the best way to do things; rather than putting a Unix workstation on each desk, buy one much more powerful machine and share it among 30 people. For interactive use, from the machine's perspective, all users have a lot of idle time, whether between keypresses, or while reading what's on screen, etc. By sharing one powerful machine, everyone gets far more peak performance than a workstation can give them, for example for a compile, while getting the same processing power when averaged throughout the day because it's unlikely that all 30 users would want peak performance at the same time.

In such an environment, you just want the PC to run Word and Outlook, and be an X terminal for everything else. What they've done at NASA gives them no real advantage.

hmm... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950808)

feet are sexy

i want to fuck hot feet with my dick

hot arched little slut feet

Re:hmm... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950875)

here ya go then [wofut.com]

Re:hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951001)

i knew i shouldn't have gotten that tattoo ... now my mom knows what i do when she's at work.

Re:hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951009)

Indeed. I showed the pic to your mom over here at work and she called you a cheating bastard. Sounds like you've got some explaining to do.

Re:hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951019)

wow ... you work at dirty dan's pure platinum topless bar too? small world!

Re:hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951030)

Well, what can I say? I have great shaved legs, tight little ass and my man-boobs fill a B-cup nicely. A little bit of make up and I have the guys stuffing greenbacks into my thongs and begging for a private show.

During the day I am a systems administrator but at night I turn into this sexy, sexy lady and make a hell of a lot money in the process.

Re:hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951039)

god ... no wonder my finger smells like shit. i thought it was a pussy with very large labia! fuck. better get my finger out of my wife's mouth.

Re:hmm... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950967)

I am 35 years old but I would like to fuck a sweet 16 old (=the age of consent over here) teen girl with a tight twat, perky breasts and amazingly firm ass and thighs.

Does that make me a dirty old man?

Re:hmm... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951051)

Yes it does, but there's absolutely nothing wrong with being a dirty old man.

Being a dirty old man I know how hard it is to get a taste of some fresh teen pussy. Before the girls hit their 30s they guard their "access port" jealously and expect all kinds of silly romancing. After that, however, they turn into more reasonable beings: "Just be nice to me, buy me a nice dinner/gift once in a while and you'll get sex in return". Too bad this does not coincide with their physical prime time.

Re:hmm... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951053)

No if you are married

Score another for Linux? Not. (2, Insightful)

Dolemite_the_Wiz (618862) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950809)

If NASA didn't have to use any more MS apps then there would be a victory for Linux.

Re:Score another for Linux? Not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950835)

Go take a bath

Re:Score another for Linux? Not. (5, Insightful)

GimmeFuel (589906) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950845)

Agreed. Instead of making a hybrid like this, their time would be better spent trying to get NASA to dump MS completely. Point out MS's track record for bugginess and insecurity (do we want script kiddies to be able to fly the space shuttle?), and Linux's freeness (sure, NASA gets volume discounts, but free is still cheaper than a percentage of something). Linux running MS software seems to defeat the whole purpose.

More MS bashing for fark's sake?! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950926)

Tell me exactly how free == better, then?

Sounds to me like there are a lot more of your so called 'script kiddies' running *ix boxes than there are Windows these days.

Re:More MS bashing for fark's sake?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951013)

Have you even bothered to look at the # of IIS & W2K exploits for 2002?! Lump in all the WXP and Office hotfixes and you don't even need a script kiddie to exploit a unpatched MS box, you just need to look at it funny.

Re:More MS bashing for fark's sake?! (1)

Newcastle22 (621052) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951064)

Yes, script kiddies (or at least semi-intelligent crackers) run Linux more so than Windows. They use it to break into the Windows systems.

As for how free == better, well, that's why Eric Raymond and others have written books on the subject of Open Source. Read 'The Cathedral and the Bazaar' if you have not explored the argument for Open Source.

Dan

Re:More MS bashing for fark's sake?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951112)

Oh, so if I write a book with a contrary argument to "The Cathedral and the Bazaar" then my point is valid?

One aspect of most OSS projects that is ignored in CatB, is this: The Importance of Having Users

Go into any non-small OSS project channel on IRC and have fun asking questions from a users perspective. It's very clique-ish. If you're not one of the "core" developers, most of the people won't listen to you. If they do, they don't "listen" and usually just say a cool statement like RTFM. Sometimes you do get help though, at the expense of being someones condensending attitude and over-inflated ego. But, every once in a while, you'll get someone who helps you and doesn't bitch about it nor crititiques you on your use of the software.

WINDOWS IS THE BEST OS (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950989)

w00t!!! another win for bill gates and a extra 10Billion dollars for him!! Bill Gates is the best person in the world all should worship Microsoft!!!

Re:WINDOWS IS THE BEST OS (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950996)

yea windows is the best of the best!! screw linux and open-source!

Crossover plugins (5, Informative)

tavarua (473460) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950819)

This article can be summed up in one sentence: The Johnson Center's IT team installed CrossOver Office from CodeWeavers Inc. on McCartney's PCs to give the engineers access to a variety of open-source and Microsoft Office apps.

Bottom line: They didn't do anything special.

How much progress is this really? (5, Insightful)

altgrr (593057) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950823)

"Score another one for Linux on the desktop". Maybe. But if you read the article it states that the machines replace both UNIX and Windows boxes, which implies that there was some un*x presence in the first place.

IMHO, you will find that, in scientific and academic establishments, un*x and Linux are used a lot, because that's what they have been working with for a long time, and that's where the programming languages are free. If the academics could have their way, a lot of universities would be running Linux already on all their desktop PCs. What? They are? Well, that'll be due to the fact that Linux is now more than passable as an OS for your everyday user.

There's a difference, though, between university students and academics running Linux, and your average office secretary running Linux. It's a difference which I think will still take a long time to erode.

Re:How much progress is this really? (2)

will_die (586523) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950840)

That is the main place I am starting to see Linux in my workplace.
Systems that were previously running Solaris were going to be converted to mswindows,development had even started to take place to convert them. However with Linux now seeing growth; windows is being dropped as servers and Linux is taking its place. While this has caused problems with delay it is all for the better.

Couldn't you already do this (3, Informative)

Jason O'Neil (607723) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950828)

Sorry, but I was under the impression that CodeWeavers could already run Word and Outlook.


Is this just an example of it's implementation or have they added something new?

Re:Couldn't you already do this (1)

D+iz+a+n+k+Meister (609493) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950842)

From the article:

The Johnson Center's IT team installed CrossOver Office from CodeWeavers Inc.

There Using Crossover Office (5, Insightful)

EzInKy (115248) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950829)

Though Bochs and Vmware are great apps, the future lies with projects like Wine. Interoperability is the only way to increase competition and that is why MS should have been forced to open up at least it's API rather than be forced to include competitors programs like Java.

MY LOSER-OMETER IS BEEPING LIKE MAD!!!! (-1)

L.Torvalds (548450) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950847)

You bitch because Microsoft won't open its code, so that you can make Linux more like Windows?

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAA

Linux sucks the ass, you need to accept this fact and move on with your life.

mandatory useless post... (1)

Jinxo (587898) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950831)

Heeey, no fair! Somebody must have warned them we were coming, all the page image links seem to be broken! Damnit!

my home setup (2)

zephc (225327) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950838)

I have a PC running XP and a G4 Cube and I use them off of one monitor with VNC (mac is server, win is client) and I'll have a nice USB-supported monitor switcher by Xmas!

VPC with XP on OSX was just unacceptable for windows coding and gaming, henc my current setup. I like the UNIXness and Macness but I have to (well, had to) do Windows programming.

it's already seamless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950856)

I have a 100 Mbps LAN and decent (> 700mhz) Windows and Linux boxes, with Cygwin to establish a remote X session from the Windows to Linux machine. The speed difference is barely noticable when using Gnome/KDE in this manner! The Cygwin clipboard-paste utility is kind of a pin, but it gets the job done.

See...... (5, Funny)

MegaHamsterX (635632) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950862)

You don't have to be a rocket scientist to use Linux...

I see what you did there. (1)

vilms (106676) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950917)

"NASA"/"rocket scientist"

Very droll...

Now back to our normal programming.

Re:See...... (1)

phoenix_rizzen (256998) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951084)

I think you meant, "See ... you *do* have to be a rocket scientist to rn Linux." :)

homeland security (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950868)

What does this article mean for homeland security?

Re:homeland security (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951070)

It means that someone should cockslap Ashcroft, Cheney and Bush in the face.

Re:homeland security (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951081)

I don't think the Secret Service would let a cock anywhere near their faces.

4:20 post (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950869)

It is, or just was, 4:20

*Raises bong in celebration*

My hot cousin Jennifer (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950939)

Goddamnit. My hot cousin Jennifer is sleeping in the room next to mine. Now I can't browse porn and jerk off like I do every night.

Re:My hot cousin Jennifer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950954)

uh... why not?

what's the worst that could happen? she might hear you? she might barge in and see in you strangling your one eyed trouser snake? women diddle with themselves just as much as us guys. those who claim to have never masturbated are plain out lying.

and who knows if you might get some action that way. my ex girlfriend often wanted to watch me masturbate as a part of the foreplay.

Re:My hot cousin Jennifer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950962)

who knows if you might get some action that way

WTF?! Are you so inbred that missed the word "cousin" in his post? Here's a newsflash for you: fucking your cousin is SICK not to mention illegal (except possibly in afghanistan or some other muslim shithole country).

Re:My hot cousin Jennifer (0, Offtopic)

binarie (636351) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950965)

dude... you also said she is "hot", now... logicaly that means that you see her as a "sex" object in your mind. Since you see her as a sex object the next thing follows is that you don't mind fucking her... and that is what was suggested just previously

Re:My hot cousin Jennifer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950985)

I am not the AC who has the hots for his "hot cousin".

Goddamn what kind of freaks read /.! What's next? Someone would like to screw his sister or mother?

Re:My hot cousin Jennifer (1)

binarie (636351) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951004)

neah... that would be very sick and unintelligent. I was just pointing at another premise in the previous statement, in order to clarify the argument.

Re:My hot cousin Jennifer (-1)

poopkilla (581580) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951031)

If Natalie Portman were my cousin, I'd still spray her up the asshole with Windex and put out some foot-massaging too. Ain't nothin' like a little slap and tickle with a bitch drippin' Windex out tha trunk, feet in my face, while I'm just sitting there on the toilet cranking out a fat load of diaper-filth to the beat of those disgusting bongo-pounding hippies next door!
I wonder if they might be some of those dirty GNU hippies? Naww...

This troll was brought you by p00p!! [slashdot.org]
"shitting bricks for a free world, baby"

OT::My hot cousin Jennifer (1)

Corporate Troll (537873) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951113)

Oh, come on... often you can even marry your cousin, you just have to ask for permission. I know a european country where you have to ask the king for permission.
Fucking your cousin isn't that sick. Not that I would do it, but I don't see it as fundamentally sick. After all sex is just a way to have fun. I just think thah having children with your cousin isn't the wisest thing to do.

Re:My hot cousin Jennifer (0, Offtopic)

ThaReetLad (538112) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951140)

Actually I believe it is legal to marry your cousin here in the UK. Not that I know anyone who has done that, but I have heard it is common among certain immigrant communities.

Hybrids (2, Insightful)

katalyst (618126) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950890)

That's the most logical way to go about things. "DUMPING" windows to jump to Linux may be too drastic. Shifting as and when required/possible, is feasible.
Incedently, Star Wars AOTC was half done on Windows and half on Linux Machines. ILM ended up shifting completely from Windows to Linux.
I've made a beginning by installing my Windows fonts on Linux. Makes life MUCH easier.

Re:Hybrids (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950988)

Nothing personal, but if you look in the extras for AOTC, you'll see plenty of interviews with ILM employees who worked on AOTC, sometimes they're demonstrating bits and pieces of AOTC.

Pay close attention to the hardware in the background. Quite often it isn't a Windows system or a Linux system. It's a Mac.

ILM does a lot of work on Macs, no matter what the geeks and/or press monkeys may say (it's fab to talk up Linux, unfashionable to mention Macs).

Re:Hybrids (1)

Com2Kid (142006) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951054)

  • Pay close attention to the hardware in the background. Quite often it isn't a Windows system or a Linux system. It's a Mac.


So Macs where used by the artsy types, your point is? The artsy fartsy machines did the artsy fartsy work and the work horse machines did the serious crunching.

Why outlook? And office? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950900)

All the trouble just to run outlook and office?
As far as I know there are equivalents to these under linux.. Or am I wrong?

Sometimes I think if we would just modify the KDE menu's K to a "start button" then everybody would be able to use Linux.

Govt mandate? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950904)

A government mandate to use Windows apps?

So they wouldn't even need this "bridge" if whatever organization didn't have that requirement.

Our win is that they weren't forced to switch to Windows? Umm, more like not letting MS get points rather than scoring points for Linux.

They kept the worst demons... (5, Insightful)

Zemran (3101) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950911)

When I think of my reasons for leaving Microsoft, Word and Outlook are right up there at the top just under reliability. Reliability has always been one thing that Microsoft could never deliver and that is something they have gained and I can agree with them all the way on this. Where do most of the problem virii come from though? Word or Outlook with the occasional one on Excel. I know that you can try to lock them out but you never really succeed.

Open Office is a great office environment that meets all my needs and I have yet to meet someone that genuinely *NEEDS* anything that Word has, that OO does not (I have met some that claim they do but it always turns out that they really mean that once in the past 2 years they once had a situation that would have been easier with Word). I use Evolution instead of Outlook and it is even as good at eye candy. It does every thing and more that I was using Outlook for. The only think Outlook does better is spread virii.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950946)

*NEEDS* anything that Word has

I suppose you have never worked in technical sales and support departments?

You are right that Word is bloated and has way too many features. However, the one thing OO and other free alternatives do not have is the 100% compatibility with Word. Without that any alternative is useless when mailing Word and Excel documents is a part of your job.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (3, Interesting)

ender81b (520454) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950972)

and I have yet to meet someone that genuinely *NEEDS* anything that Word has

Well the asinine installation program that for some god unknown reason needs to 'configure' itself everytime you look at it the wrong way or some other user logs onto the computer helps keep me employed... =) (yes, blah we just made a custom .msi installation script that 'installs on first run' or whatever the point is you shouldn't fscking have to). of course it also makes me want to gouge out my eyes with a plastic spoon the minute somebody mentions MS Office.

FOR GODS SAKE WHY WHY WHY DOES MSOFFICE NEED TO FSCKING CONFIGURE ITSELF? WHY CAN"T IT JUST BE INSTALLED LIKE EVERY OTHER FSCKING APPLICATION? WHY GOD WHY IN THE NAME OF ALL THAT IS GOOD AND HOLY WHY?

Sorry. See what I mean?

Re:They kept the worst demons... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950980)

What the HELL are you talking about?

You only need to install MS Office once if you do a custom installation and install all the components you need right from the beginning. In older Office versions this is a good time to deselect Clippy installation as well. No configuration required after that.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (1)

ender81b (520454) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950987)

Install MSoffice on one account. Click on word icon. MS office pops up and needs to configure itself - insert cd. Fine. Great. Rinse, repeat for all user accounts on system. Sound like fun?

Re:They kept the worst demons... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950995)

I have Windows XP with MS Office installed using the Administrator account.

No configuration was required when I started Word on my regular user account. To check your claims, I activated the Guest account and tried running Word there. No CD required.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (1)

ender81b (520454) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951005)

Might be different in XP. THis is using windows 2000/office 2000. So far I have only seen it on 98/2k computers that happen to be on a windows domain. You won't see it most likely if you are not on a domain. Try clicking on the 'open new office document' in the start menu in a different account.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951018)

You won't see it most likely if you are not on a domain.

Ok, that probably explains it. I am not on a domain.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (1)

Corporate Troll (537873) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951090)

I have seen what you describe in a NT4/Office2k and W2k/Office2k situation. Wasn't on a Windows domain, used Novell.

At home I just stayed on W2k/Office97. Works fine for my needs, and only had minor issues with Macro's if you don't run it as Admin (due to security settings in the registry). But that's all documented quite well at microsofts site.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951022)

Anon since this is getting off topic. At any rate since you don't apparently believe me go read below - ms tech net article on how to prevent this from occuring:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/treeview/defaul t. asp?url=/technet/prodtechnol/office/office2000/dep loy/depopt/wiofc2k.asp

Re:They kept the worst demons... (2)

MonkeyBoy (4760) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951003)

Aren't anonymous cowards fun?

Frankly, the most annoying part of that install procedure is one user who every month or two ends up having that "install" process start over - for no apparent reason. He just logs into the system in the morning, fires up Outlook, and bam, time to reinstall!

So then Outlook forgets the server name, so then he calls me, and I'm none too happy to be bothered with asinine problems before I've put some caffeine in me.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (5, Informative)

ender81b (520454) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951017)

Ouch. I've found this especially useful for office installs (link below) - basically it is a custom script that will not only install on first run but if some random asinine problem happens will look for a network share of office and grab the files necassary. even works if the people delete their entire office install:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/treeview/defaul t. asp?url=/technet/prodtechnol/office/office2000/dep loy/depopt/wiofc2k.asp

Re:They kept the worst demons... (1)

brightertimes (633671) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951075)

I actually had the same problem, apparently on an the m$ kb article it stated because you installed word on a non-admin account i.e. non-global, every other account that is set up needs to have the correct registry enteries installed as the user-account doesnt have access to the admininstrator permissions. There is a link to a microsoft kb article which may help HERE [microsoft.com]

Re:They kept the worst demons... (2, Insightful)

Dysan2k (126022) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951008)

Outlook, I'm definately in agreement on. That is one piece of definate anti-productivity. Evolution was kind in giving a very similar look and feel, but truth be told, it's still not the definative answer. It copies something that many of us remember being a HUGE pita when it came out, and only got worse (migration from Outlook 2k -> Outlook XP was a miserable experience due to bugs galore.)

Office has become some severe bloatware, but in it's younger years (office 95 std), it wasn't too shabby at all. Gave all the functionality that you needed plus the macro abilities which were strong enough to do things like importing an address book from excel/access and producing mass-mailers for churches and businesses alike (put anti-church sentiment elsewhere, not the topic of this thread.) I firmly believe that if you were to model an office suite from 95 and make different improvements like easier wizards and such, that would be the killer app. Word has become more of a page-layout software than the word processor it began as.

Also, far too many people rely on Access instead of a relational db, but there must be some merit there that could be improved upon for a x-platform solution. I mean, we have db4 databases, why not slap an easy to use gui on the front? (If there's such a system that exists, I'm unaware of it so please list it in a reply.)

OpenOffice is a pretty great piece of work, and hopefully it can be tweaked to fix that niche that is the business desktop. I believe that another type of Email client, however, is really going to be necessary before the masses will accept it.

Many people still say that Linux can never fill the desktop market.

I don't believe that at all, but the large-profile companies (RH, Mandrake, Caldera) need to stop stripping the common desktop tools and include a distribution that gives the user the power that they have on current Windows boxen. Aside from not having a true DirectX equiv. (would be a HUGE bonus), they need to include packages like a video media player that covers ALL formats (including QT/Real/DivX) instead of having to download 10 different packages and compile them all (IN order, otherwise you lack features.. bloody mess), and provide a viewer that is intuitive enough for "Joe Bob" to use. He can already use Win Media, so make something as easy, but can play more formats (insert obligatory mpeg-2 + ogg plug here). Also, put the mp3 libs back in! XMMS is nice, but dangit, I wanna play both mp3's AND ogg's.

Businesses are slowly accepting Linux, but it's my belief that still some things must be changed before it can hit mainstream. The power is there and the apps are coming close. We just need to tighten the reigns and pull it all together.

[NOTE] I have tried multiple times to build a new email client, but to no avail. I've never been any good at layout and past attempts prove it. However, I'm gonna still plug at it until I or someone else gets it right.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951034)

Umm,

Access is a relational database.

Dumbass.

Reliability (2)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951029)

The advantage of running Windows apps on Unix is that the app is very unlikely to take the damn OS - and hence, all your other running apps - with it when it goes down!

It's amazing watching Windows users get their first taste of reliability ... and realise what sort of crap they've been putting up with all this time, and that they don't have to any more.

Key marketing point for Unix over Windows: A STABLE, RELIABLE DESKTOP. That doesn't fall over once a day.

Re:They kept the worst demons... (5, Insightful)

sql*kitten (1359) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951144)


Reliability has always been one thing that Microsoft could never deliver and that is something they have gained and I can agree with them all the way on this.

Really? I can't remember the last time I had Outlook or Word (2000 and XP) actually crash, and I use 'em both every day. The 2000 line of products is a huge leap over the 95 line (which I will agree were pretty crap).

Microsoft do have some unreliable products still - IIS and Exchange spring immediately to mind. But a lot of their stuff now is rock solid. I can honestly say that in the last couple of years I've had more Xemacs crashes than Word.

I know that you can try to lock them out but you never really succeed.

You can turn off VBA with a couple of clicks. Now do you want to talk about buffer overruns in sendmail and named?

I use Evolution instead of Outlook and it is even as good at eye candy. It does every thing and more that I was using Outlook for. The only think Outlook does better is spread virii.

As a straight mail client, Outlook as some competition from Open Source, but for groupware Open Source doesn't have anything to compare.

Government wasting taxpayer money (2)

Woogiemonger (628172) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950919)

Why can't the government just use Linux and Staroffice instead of wasting a crapload of taxpayer money on Microsoft products? If Denmark's entire school system [slashdot.org] can do it, so can NASA. There might be other products out there that Microsoft writes for the average desktop PC which become "government-mandated", but I'm sure it's no big deal to find cheap or free alternatives.

Re:Government wasting taxpayer money (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950940)

yeah, have NASA define mission critical, then have Denmark's entire school system describe mission critical. I'm sure you'll find there is slight difference.

Re:Government wasting taxpayer money (2, Insightful)

hdparm (575302) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950986)

I don't quite understand what you're saying. Can you please explain where do Outlook/Office apps come into picture when talking about mission critical systems? If anything, they may make those systems only less reliable, due to their proneness to viruses.

Re:Government ?wasting? taxpayer money (3, Informative)

Dysan2k (126022) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951044)

Schools and business are 2 totally different institutions. Not trying to down you, Woogie, but computers used in a school system and a business are not the same. Give ya a good example:

Computers go down at the Board of Education. People can't access budget, students grades, or profile records. Wait until the system comes back up or is restored from backup. It's just annoying since there are no REALLY necessary deadlines outside of payroll.

Computers go down at the office. Sales can't work on/give presentations to clients, customer information can't be retrieved (think ISP or Credit card processor), or quarterly reports can't be completed for stockholders/banks. This can cost a company a TON of money, clients could leave to find another place of business, etc. (Imagine needing the IRS to look up your information to make sure your extension was filed lest you be fined/go to jail.)

Keep in mind, swapping an office or group of offices takes a TON of time. Normally there are a number of in-house applications that would have to be re-written AND heavily tested before they could be implemented (think of the MEGS of VB source that would have to be ported to perl/php/java). In the gov't, MOST applications are custom-written, many by contracted companies, so the gov't doesn't necessarily have the source to it. Then there is retraining of employees to use the new office/email applications, and the meer re-install of EVERYone's machines from Win to Linux where you hope that all the needed hardware is supported (which has gotten SO much better in the past 3 years.)

It's a daunting task, and can be VERY costly in man-hours to do such a task. If nothing else, the down-time upon switching over and the performance curve while everyone learns the new applications.

I agree in the sense that I'd LOVE to see M$ no longer in the gov't offices, but I also realize what it would entail to switch everything over.

score one for linux? (2, Insightful)

Stanley Feinbaum (622232) | more than 11 years ago | (#4950921)

How is this a score for linux if people are still using proprietary applications such as word and outlook? Linux isn't linux without the main software being open-source applications created for linux, not microsoft programs being "emulated' on the linux desktop.

Personally, I think this is more a score for microsoft, being able to market their proprietary products to more people.

Mandate standards not Apps (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950942)

I feel that government should be mandating standards not Apps. But then Microsoft apps would not be aloud.

Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950973)

I work at Nasa's astronaut training facility. I have since well, many years...I've never heard of this guy, or his network.
So many of us here at JSC dislike Windows and prefer Unix/Linux that I am sure I'd have heard if someone was building a Linux lab.
Not sure where this guy is hiding...

bridging the gap?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4950977)

maybe there was pun intended, but aren't these the same folks that fucked up with the metric/us standard system? maybe bridging gaps isn't their thing.

MICROSOFT RULES (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951023)

this is why microsoft rules the world,screw linux and open-source, id take microsoft products anyday

6AM (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951040)

on the day of christmas eve, and im reading slashdot. jesus christ on a popsicle stick, whats wrong with me?

Re:6AM (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951073)

Nothing.

I am doing just the same. All the trolls, goatse-guys and crapflooders are nothing compared to spending the X-mas eve with a fucking insane family and meeting even more disturbed relatives.

Christmas is the time of the year when all the pus under the scab called family is released.

Hybrids are good for linux. (3, Interesting)

Kjella (173770) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951047)

Don't expect every program people might need to exist or get ported to linux. I know of at least one business that went from win98 to VMware/win98. Of course this means they'll replace what they can with native linux apps as time goes by, but those things take time, money, and nagging many software producers. Plus a gradual changeover is much better for the users and support, which get things slowly instead of a *completely* new system. All the menus/buttons being in different places can be enough of a problem for some. Having a fall-back solution is always good.

Kjella

RMS would not approve (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951055)

RMS would say: NO COMPROMISE!

VMware is not free. Windows is not free. By using both or either you are acting unethically!

Re:RMS would not approve (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951063)

Who cares what RMS approves.

He is a nut who does not shower and who likes to play a flute -- probably a "skin flute" too.

Why outlook? (1)

ej (94475) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951091)

I'm wondering why outlook is a 'government-mandated' app. It's hard to see the difference between an email generated by outlook or another email app. Why force people to use an app, while there are plenty of different compatible apps available?

Re:Why outlook? (2)

ThaReetLad (538112) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951134)

One word. Exchange

Score another one for Linux on the Desktop ? (2, Funny)

dJOEK (66178) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951104)

That brings them up to, what, one and a half ?

Use Linux-only (1)

anarchima (585853) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951121)

Why not just get rid of all the Windows apps and run Linux eclusively? Seems like you can do all the email/word processor/spreadsheet stuff in OpenOffice, StarOffice, KOffice or whatever, with some Crossover plugins. Certainly, if that's all they're doing under Windows, then it doesn't justify a bi-platform existence.

NASA and Government Waste, and Free Software (4, Insightful)

Conspire (102879) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951142)

Why oh why, do we have an agency that is already under budget pressures, REQUIRING thier employees to use MS software for email and office applications, when they cost MUCH more in licensing fees to that budget squeezed agency? It is so disgusting I am almost to lazy to start the list, but here is my list of points:

1. If NASA says GNULinux administrations costs are too high, think again---surely all these Unix gurus can administer thier own systems little support needed.

2. If NASA says that MS Office Formats are required for standard file formatted documents accross the organization, think again----surely the entire organization switching to OpenOffice.org is a much better way to ENSURE future standardization without upgrade costs.

3. IF NASA says that MS OUTLOOK is needed to standardize email ---- sticking to open and standard protocols as opposed to proprietary and costly protocols is surely the best way to standardization.

4. IF NASA management says that they liked the MS PowerPointless presentation, they probably did, and they probably believed all the points that MS made to them during the presentation. Which explains why we have a GOVERNMENT organization still running PROPRIETARY software and forcing thier users to use MICROSOFT when they don't want to!

5. If NASA made it a REQUIREMENT that ALL of its vendors communicate using OPEN and NON-PROPRIETARY FILE FORMATS as a REQUIREMENT FOR DOING BUSINESS, THEY WOULD!

6. If you told your senator what you think, than you did the right thing. If you did not, than you can blame no one but yourself when GNULinux is OUTLAWED and a copy of PALADIUM is REQUIRED to VOTE.

Get the letters out to the senators folks.

spelling troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4951157)

s/GNULinux/Linux
s/PALADIUM /palladium

Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war! (0, Offtopic)

Alsee (515537) | more than 11 years ago | (#4951160)

Damn terrorists trying to destroy the US economy!

THEY
MUST
BE
STOPPED!

We must protect the children!

-
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